ITHACA, NY — Do you like fried chicken? How about BBQ pork ribs? Effectively then, if you have not found The Rook, located in the vicinity of the West Finish of downtown Ithaca on State Road, you are in for a treat. With their limited menu, these two entrées constitute 50% of their overall main study course offerings — and both of those are actually fantastic.
Initially, their most well-liked entrée, fried rooster. Immediately after it is delivered to the restaurant, the cooks dress it with herbs and spices and then vacuum offer it. When a purchaser orders fried hen, a mild breading is applied and it is briefly deep fried in duck excess fat for a prosperous, crispy, strong texture and taste. It’s cooked to the stage of staying juicy without currently being fatty and offered in four-piece ($11) and 8-piece ($19) servings. It will come with a dipping sauce which is way as well scorching for me, even so the chicken is juicy more than enough that I really don’t sense the will need for a sauce.
The rooster is not accompanied by a aspect dish so I usually order collard greens ($7) which I truly enjoy. Collard greens need a little bit of cooking to soften and these are cooked just more than enough to be the correct texture with out staying mushy. They are cooked in some of the handmade broth gleaned from cooking the hen. In the course of the cooking system some ham hocks (an genuine southern contact) and a little bit of vinegar are included. Yet another side I’ve tried using is their selfmade coleslaw ($7) and I choose their vinaigrette base to the gloppy mayonnaise served in a lot of institutions. The addition of some flavorful seasonings, like poppy seeds, provides a welcome accent.
The BBQ pork ribs ($13 for a 50 percent rack – $23 for a whole rack), are “meaty” without getting fatty and are seasoned with just a bit of spices devoid of remaining overpowering. I was content to find that it is quick to slash the meat off the bones with the plastic knife that is available.
I really do not normally purchase a dessert with dinner but at The Rook I alternate between the only two on offer you. They make their personal doughnuts and they are delectable. For lack of a improved term, I imagine of them as “cakey” and moist. Most not too long ago I requested the blueberry glaze, crumble doughnuts. Indeed, that is plural. You need to commit to three doughnuts ($7) and all three are the same variety which is adjusted routinely.
The other dessert is a pudding, served in a small parfait dish. Lately it was banana foster vanilla pudding which I requested and relished. Bananas were sliced and layered with the pudding and topped with whipped cream and crumbled corn flakes. It experienced a slight taste of rum and was a fantastic ending to an excellent dinner.
This kind of delicacies is not notably conducive to high-quality wine accompaniments, which is acceptable as only a full of four wines are on present, all for $7/glass: a purple, a white, a rose and a glowing. Names of state of origin, wineries, and vintages are not equipped. In addition, there’s a constrained choice of esoteric beers on faucet, in cans and in bottles.
You may possibly have figured, by the variety of food stuff on present, that The Rook is not a location to go for fantastic eating. Relatively, it is far more like heading to an indoor picnic — dishes are all paper, cutlery is entirely plastic, drinks, which include draft beer, wine by the glass, and h2o come in plastic cups, and there are no desk coverings. The primary programs and sides are brought to the table in cardboard dishes.
The restaurant is compact — lengthy and slender — however there is room exterior for individuals who get pleasure from al fresco eating. And every single time I have been there I have observed a continual stream of evident regulars who select up dinners they’ve requested in advance.
If a cafe only presents a compact variety, e.g., the four entrées at The Rook, I believe we have a proper to expect genuinely good high-quality for the reason that the cooks can focus on the purchasing, seasonings, planning, and cooking time and method of their restricted choices. If you don’t intellect the considerable use of paper, cardboard, and plastic, I consider you’ll be pretty satisfied with the generous portions, welcoming, attentive service, and the superb high-quality of the foodstuff at The Rook.
-A 15% gratuity is extra to each and every invoice.
-The Rook is shut Sunday and Monday and not open up for lunch.